Walker: Oscar Mayer has 'nothing to do with Wisconsin'
MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker says Oscar Mayer's decision to close its 100-year-old plant in Madison and relocate its corporate headquarters to Chicago "has nothing to do with Wisconsin."
Walker said Thursday that leaving the state, taking 1,000 jobs with it, was an unfortunate "corporate decision" made by Oscar Mayer's parent company Heinz Kraft.
State and local government officials say the news took them by surprise, even though Heinz Kraft merged in July and laid off 165 workers at the Madison plant, stoking concerns the facility would shut down.
Walker says his economic development agency had been in touch with Heinz Kraft and "provided assistance," which he says the company declined.
A spokesman for the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation says no one asked for an incentive package to stay.